Elista, is the capital city of the Republic of Kalmykia, Russia. It was founded in 1865 and became a city in 1930. In 1944, when the Kalmyks were exiled by Joseph Stalin for their alleged collaboration with the Germans, the republic was dissolved and the city became known as Stepnoy (“Steppe”). The town center has a number of renovated public parks focused on the main square, boasting statues to both Lenin and the Buddha. To the east of the town lies the Olympic village of the 1998 XXXIII Chess Olympiad, known locally as "City-Chess".